TEL AVIV (Jun. 4)
The Defense establishment’s Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) has completed manufacture of a series of special fuel tanks for F-15 fighters in use with the U.S. Air Force, designed to increase the plane’s internal fuel capacity by 70 percent.
IAI built 50 sets of the tanks for the American manufacturer of F-15s, McDonnell-Douglas, under a $30 million deal as part of an agreement whereby the U.S. orders parts in Israel to reciprocate for Israeli purchases in the U.S.
Unlike conventional extra fuel tanks which are placed under the wings of aircraft, the conformal tanks, which are also produced in the U.S., are attached to the plane’s fusalage. They are specially contoured to prevent additional drag at subsonic speeds and create far less drag at supersonic speeds than the conventional under-wing external tanks.